The wrestling world is in shock as World Wrestling Entertainment Hall of Famer, Bret ’The Hitman’ Hart,’ tells fans that he is currently battling prostate cancer.He was the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be.
Wrestling legend Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart is facing the toughest fight of his life. He has prostate cancer. The 58-year old former wrestling star announced the news to his fans saying: ‘prostate cancer can be beaten.’
I hope he is right.
I was a wrestling nut when I was a kid.
I would watch British wrestlers like Big Daddy and Giant Haystacks bumping bellies after watching Saint & Greavsie on a Saturday. Every so often, there would be a report from the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) in America. The likes of Hulk Hogan, Macho Man Randy Savage and The Ultimate Warrior made the Brits look like bums.
Back then the only way you could keep tabs on the WWF was to order their magazine from the US. I did. Hulk Hogan even sent my sister a Christmas card.
In the 1990s my parents bought Sky TV.
I stopped ordering the magazines.
I could now watch my heroes on the screen.
My mates and I would gather around the box to watch the bouts. Afterwards, when my parents went to the pub, we would bring the mattresses downstairs and fight like our heroes. We even had entrance music and costumes. I remember bleeding all over my mother’s sheets trying to break free of my mate’s pile driver when I kneed myself in the nose.
“It’s not real” my Dad used to say.
But the Hitman made it real. He was one of the very few wrestlers who made you believe. He was that good. The Hart Foundation were my favorite tag team. Their battles with The Rockers and Demolition still hit my highlight reel when I think about them.
But he came alive when he moved into singles competition. During the 90s he held the WWF title longer than any other man of that era. The WWF champion is the face of the company. That’s how much Vince McMahon trusted his pulling power back then.
It all ended in bitterness after McMahon and Shawn Michaels shafted him on the eve of his departure to the World Championship Wrestling (WCW) organization. Michaels defeating Hart in the 1997 Survivor Series after referee Earl Hebner called for the bell, with Hart in the sharp shooter submission move, despite not tapping out. It was later confirmed that McMahon had given Hebner orders to give Michaels the win. The pair would kiss and make up over time. Hart was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2006.
The Canadian held 32 championships spread over five decades between the 70s and the 2010s. He became only the second person behind Pedro Morales to become a WWE Triple Crown winner (WWE Championship, Tag Team and Intercontinental Championship). He won the 1994 Royal Rumble jointly with Lex Luger, and was a two-time King of the Ring winner (91 & 93).
“My fans have always looked upon me as a hero,” Hart posted on Instagram, “And I’ve always done my best to live up to that in and out of the ring. I will wage my fearsome fight against cancer with one shield and one sword carrying my determination and my fury for life.”
Let’s hope he has one last major title in him.